Head Coach: Karl Dorrell (2nd year, 6-7)
Last Season's Record: 6-7 (4-4, T-6th in Pac-10)
Last Bowl Appearance: 2003 Silicon Valley Bowl (17-9 loss to Fresno St.)
Key matchup(s): Sept. 4 Oklahoma St., Sept. 18 @UW, Oct. 16 @Cal, Dec. 4 USC.
Star Power: SR WR Craig Bragg, 6-1, 200; JR TE Marcedes Lewis, 6-6, 250; SO RB Maurice Drew, 5-9, 200; JR LB Justin London, 6-2, 235; SR FS Ben Emanuel, 6-3, 210.
Notable Additions: DE Kyle Morgan, 6-3, 260, JC Transfer; DE Brigham Harwell, 6-1, 250, Hacienda Heights (Calif.) Los Altos; OL Shannon Tevaga, 6-3, 295, La Mirada (Calif.) High.
Notable Subtractions: DE Dave Ball, DT Rodney Leisle, LB Brandon Chillar, CB Matt Ware.
Notable Returnees: SR WR Tab Perry is trying to get re-instated academically; JR QB Drew Olson, SR TB Manuel White; JR LB Spencer Havner; JR DT C.J. Niusulu; JR SS Jarrad Page.
|2004 FOOTBALL SCHEDULE|
|10/02/04||San Diego State|
Defensive Overview: The defense will have a hard time replacing some all-conference veterans, such as Dave Ball, Rod Leisle, and Brandon Chillar. In fact, it lost six of its seven top defensive linemen from last year. In addition, it also lost two other DLs in the off-season who would have figured prominently in the two-deep, one to a knee injury and another to academics. The linebackers return some stars in juniors Justin London and Spencer Havner. The backfield took a big hit when cornerback Matt Ware bypassed his senior year for the NFL. In other words, UCLA's defense, which has been its stalwart for the last couple of years, is a bit of a mystery heading into 2004. Some new names, like JC transfer DE Kyle Morgan, JR DT C.J. Niusulu and possibly JR CB Nnamdi Ohaeri will have to pick up the slack. There is talent, but depth in the front seven is thin, so staying healthy for the defense is key.
Special Teams Overview: UCLA returns one of the best kicking duos in the conference, with senior punter Chris Kluwe, who averaged 42.9 yards per punt, and sophomore placekicker Justin Medlock, who was 14-of-19 for the season. UCLA did well returning kicks and punts, with Maurice Drew exhibiting some flair for kick-off returns. It did struggle, though, in punt return coverage, something the coaching staff has indicated in the off-season it will try to rectify.
The Bruins can win eight games this season if... it can get more production out of its offense, particularly its offensive line. UCLA's offense was considered very conservative a season ago and Cable is expected to spice things up a bit, hopefully able to do so with better OL play. The thin defense will have to avoid injury, especially to its front seven. UCLA's schedule also is pretty favorable, with no non-conference opponents that would conceivably be top 25 teams.
|TheInsiders.com 2004 College Football Preview|
|ACC||Big 12||Big East||Big Ten||Pac-10||SEC||Independent|
Stanford UCLA USC Washington Washington State